vexillum

[vek-sil-uh m]
noun, plural vex·il·la [vek-sil-uh] /vɛkˈsɪl ə/.
  1. a military standard or flag carried by ancient Roman troops.
  2. a group of men serving under such a standard.
  3. video frequency.
  4. Also vex·il [vek-sil] /ˈvɛk sɪl/. Botany. the large upper petal of a papilionaceous flower.
  5. Ornithology Rare. the web or vane of a feather.

Origin of vexillum

1720–30; < Latin: standard, flag, diminutive from the base of vēlum sail (see veil)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for vexillum

Historical Examples of vexillum

  • Vexillum we know, and vexillarius, but vexillarium goes beyond my Latin.

    About Orchids

    Frederick Boyle

  • Some writers apply this name (inaccurately) to flags of vexillum form, with or without tails at the base.

    British Flags

    W. G. Perrin

  • From the ends of this cross-piece, whether it held a vexillum or not, hung ribbons with silver ivy leaves at the ends.

    British Flags

    W. G. Perrin

  • Evidently these flags were symbols of authority, as we have seen the vexillum to have been centuries before.

    British Flags

    W. G. Perrin

  • Vexillum balzanum, so named from "balzan," a piebald horse; the word was subsequently corrupted to "beauseant."

    British Flags

    W. G. Perrin


British Dictionary definitions for vexillum

vexillum

noun plural -la (-lə)
  1. ornithol the vane of a feather
  2. botany another name for standard (def. 16)
Derived Formsvexillary or vexillar, adjectivevexillate, adjective

Word Origin for vexillum

C18: from Latin: banner, perhaps from vēlum sail
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012